three more reasons to hydrate
We all know that hydration is important for our physical health. But are you aware of the non-physical reasons to keep your body topped off? Let’s review why drinking water is a top performance habit.
So you’ve probably heard that the body is 60-70% water, that water is essential for healthy skin, muscles, organs, digestion, and joints, and that if you go without fluids for more than a few days, you’ll die.
Fortunately for most people, the hypothalamus region of the brain triggers thirst, making death from severe dehydration a non-issue.
But what about mild dehydration?
With most people in the developed world drinking less water than their body needs, mild dehydration is a near epidemic. Just about every bodily process benefits from better hydration. But, here are 3 more reasons you should get your daily dose.
1. Improved cognitive function.
• Even mild dehydration has been shown to erode our ability to focus, so drinking more water can keep you sharp and help you get more done, especially as the day wears on.
• Mild dehydration can cause headaches, which can negatively impact your concentration.
• Regular trips to the restroom throughout the day (combined with a small low-sugar snack) provide a healthy rhythm for optimal regulation of willpower, which will keep you making better decisions all day long.
2. Better relationships.
• Mild dehydration has been shown to negatively affect mood. Staying fully hydrated can therefore help you avoid conflict with others. Stay positive. Keep the peace. Drink your water.
• Your extra trips to the water cooler and restroom also provide great opportunities for healthy socialization. Leaders who are more visible report higher levels of employee engagement.
3. Healthier finances.
• First of all, ditch the fancy bottled water if possible. Filtered tap water is generally safe, readily available, and eco-friendly. If you must drink bottled water, buy in bulk using a refillable jug for pennies per gallon.
• Assuming you follow this recommendation, tap water is one of the cheapest resources in the western world. You’ll save upwards of $1000/year.
• Given your elevated physical performance, cognitive function, more positive emotional state, and blossoming relationships, your added water consumption should also yield greater production at work, actually driving more positive financial results for you and your organization.
Is it possible to drink too much? Yes, but it’s unlikely for most people. Unless you have a medical condition causing you to retain water , increasing your water intake steadily throughout the day should be safe. Consult your physician to be on the safe side.
If you are an endurance athlete, check out my follow-on post about the rare but real danger you may face with drinking water too quickly during recovery.
Question. What non-physical benefits have you realized from drinking more water?